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Auto blogFri, 18 Jan 2013 09:29:00 EST
This year's annual Eyes on Design awards were presented at the end of press days for the Detroit Auto Show on Tuesday. Given out for the best production and concept car designs that debuted at the show, and voted on by an esteemed panel of actual car designers, this year's award for best production vehicle design went to the 2014 Cadillac ELR. The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette, which was the show favorite among Autoblog editors, apparently did not impress the Eyes on Design judges enough with its all-new vent-festooned design.
The award for best concept design was actually split as a tie among the Nissan Resonance and Ford Atlas concepts. Last year's winners were the 2013 Ford Fusion and the Lexus LF-LC concept.
The Eyes on Design organization also presented a new honor this year called the Catalyst Award to Bob Lutz, former Vice Chairman of General Motors. Lutz is reported to have given a defense of design in his acceptance speech, arguing that advancements in quality across the industry as a whole have made good design a key differentiator for buyers.
Ford has combined multiple steps into one with its commercial vehicle configurator, which allows users to choose, design and place orders for the Transit, Transit Connect, E-Series vans and F-Series Super Duty trucks.
The most interesting part of the new configurator is a fairly robust design tool. Users are able to choose paint color and wrap the vehicle, and then create their own graphics. No materials are needed - Ford provides numerous background textures, text boxes, plenty of shapes and 20 categories of images including floral, construction, plumbing and skylines. Self-created designs or images can be uploaded to the system as well.
We played around with the design tool a bit and uploaded our own image to create the Autoblog Podcast Live van you see here. Feel free to check out the configurator and make your own design.
The Ford Mustang may not be the first vehicle that comes to mind when you think of environmentally-friendly forms of transportation. The arrival of the turbocharged four-cylinder engine in the new Mustang could do a lot to combat that perception, but the EcoBoost engine may just be the tip of the iceberg in that regard.
Speaking with Ford powertrain boss Bob Fascetti at the reveal of the new Mustang in Australia, GoAuto reports that the Blue Oval automaker is considering offering its latest pony car with a diesel, hybrid or even electric powertrain in the future.
"We're not looking at diesel at the moment, but given where we need to go with fuel consumption we are looking at all our options," said Fascetti. Other options could include a nine- or ten-speed automatic transmission to replace the current six-speed unit in order to help improve fuel economy and emissions for the Mustang, although figures for the current lineup have yet to be revealed.